Couples Terminal and Chronic Illness
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You are not alone! No matter what problems you are facing, you can overcome them and I will teach you how.
My training and experience is in treating couples, individuals and families. I work with clients to help them identify their goals, learn new and more effective coping skills, and implement strategies to better manage their challenges. The overriding goal in therapy is enhancing the quality of your life.
People who are seeking therapy for themselves will come see me if they need:
Therapy can help you:
Psychotherapy helps the person examine and change destructive premises and beliefs that lead to behaviors that are self defeating and stand in the way of personal goal. In individual therapy, the client will learn ways to restructure negative thoughts into more positive and successful ways of thinking.
Most of us think, behave, and react on a purely conscious level, never realizing that we are driven by impulses from deep within the unconscious self. The limited awareness we have keeps us from realizing that our attitudes, beliefs, feelings and behaviors are based on deep-seated fears created by past conditioning, experiences, and accumulated emotional pain.
Fear creates negative thinking, which can cause a distorted self-image, anxiety or depression, lack of personal fulfillment, and dysfunctional relationships. In our attempts to alleviate fear, we think and act in ways that can create suffering for others and ourselves. Therapy can help provide freedom from these hidden forces and open the way to living a more joyful life.
I also enjoy helping clients work through various life transitions and relationship issues.
I focus on counseling the person to become aware of how their behavior effects others which in turn prevents them from developing closeness and stability in relationships. Early experiences are part of a multi-layered tapestry of life experience that shapes the person we become. Exploring how the past influences the present is a powerful way to gain a deeper understanding of how individuals contribute to problems in their relationships and what to do about it.
Therapy can help illuminate the motivating forces behind the thinking and behaviors of loved ones so that you can gain an understanding of their thoughts and behaviors .
In therapy I will help you learn effective coping strategies, improve your relationships, make healthy decisions, and take positive actions to create a happy and satisfying life.
Psychotherapy is a common and useful means of self-growth and self-actualization for many people. Therapy is tailored to meet your individual needs.
We talk about where and who you've been, but primarily focus on where you want to go and what you need to get there. It is common for me to assign homework to keep you working towards your goals outside our time together.
“When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.”— Viktor E. Frankl
Marriage Counseling & Couples Therapy
Have you been married for a while, and find that the relationship has become stale and want to see if there is hope for positive changes?
Have you gone through stressful transitions in life as a couple and want to learn how to reconnect?
Do you want to have your needs met in this relationship?
Do you want to bring intimacy and romance back?
If you answered “yes” to any of those questions, know that in couple therapy it is possible to achieve the changes you have been hoping for.
All couples go through periods of difficulty, whether due to life transitions, arguing, loss, infidelity, or simply feeling disconnected. When couples get resentful or hopeless, one common thought is to either move on to another relationship or settle for what they have. Neither of those options are ideal.
Choosing to get help by seeing a therapist can be difficult, but it can be the first step towards creating a better relationship.
In couples therapy, one of the primary goals is to help couples develop healthy ways to resolve conflicts, improve communication, find compassion, nurture each other, and meet each other's needs. Couples learn to approach each other more maturely, coming from the best in themselves, in order to get what they want.
A major component of our work together is learning to communicate effectively, even while under stress, so that there’s understanding of each other’s position, and why they do what they do, before they can move to finding solutions and reaching their potential.
How one acts and communicates under stress, will determine the quality of one’s relationship, therefore we also focus on self-soothing, understanding self-defeating patterns and losing strategies, and replacing those with winning strategies and relational behaviors.
Couples counseling is not only about solving problems. We work to strengthen the foundations of the relationship, rediscover the positives that brought you together in the first place, and create new habits that build up rather than undermine the relationship. A couple with strong positives is resilient against stress and setbacks.
I provide an unbiased and supportive environment where couples can feel more comfortable sharing authentically and building emotional intimacy. During sessions we may explore how the past influences the present which is a powerful way to gain a deeper understanding of how individuals contribute to problems in their relationships and what to do about it.
In my approach, I employ a combination of the top 2 couples therapy methods ever developed.
I have completed the 1st level of Emotionally Focused Therapy for Couples which is an approach developed by Dr. Sue Johnson based in attachment theory, and it has been validated by empirical studies. I had the rare experience of being personally trained by Sue Johnson. Her approach seeks to help couples understand the negative patterns or cycles at work in the relationship that foster distance and to work to create new communication and ways of relating to each other that deepen connection.
I have also completed Level 1 Training in Gottman Method Couples, and was personally trained by them as well. Their 40 years of research has focused on what makes marriages succeed or fail. From this research, Drs. John and Julie Gottman have created a method of therapy that emphasizes a nuts-and-bolts approach to improving clients’ relationships. This method is designed to help teach specific tools to deepen friendship and intimacy in your relationship and to learn to productively manage conflicts.
I am trained and certified in PREPARE/ENRICH, an assessment and counseling approach for couples preparing for marriage or seeking to enrich their marriage, regardless of how long they have been married I generally recommend at least six counseling sessions for couples preparing for marriage.
We are never so vulnerable as when we love." Sigmund Freud
Terminal or Chronic Illness
My concern with clients diagnosed with a terminal illness is the psychological responses of patients at all stages of the disease and that of their families and caretakers. For family members of someone diagnosed with an illness, it can be very difficult to manage. They often struggle with knowing what the patient needs, how to give it to them, and how to take care of their own personal needs as well. I have found, in the past several years, that there is very little support for family members and caregivers of ill patients. I am here to give that support from a unique perspective.
"When someone has cancer, their whole family and everyone who loves them does too"